Department chairs' perceptions of knowledge management strategies in colleges of education : measurement of performance and importance by organizational factors
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In order to address and overcome challenges that higher education institutions confront, it is critical for higher education institutions to embrace and recognize the applicability and implication of knowledge management. Knowledge management helps establish a comprehensive framework for developing leadership, creating an organizational culture, applying existing technologies to an organization, and increasing awareness of the importance of measurement for decision making. The purpose of this study was to: (a) assess the perceptions of academic department chairs in colleges of education of performance of knowledge management strategies, (b) examine the perceptions of department chairs of the importance of knowledge management strategies, and (c) identify organizational factors that may differ in knowledge management strategies in perceptions of performance and perceptions of importance. Two research questions guided this inquiry: (1) how academic department chairs in colleges of education differ in their perceptions of performance of their departments based on the applications of knowledge management strategies (leadership, culture, technology, and measurement) by organizational factors, and (2) how academic department chairs in colleges of education differ in their perceptions of the importance of knowledge management strategies by organizational factors. This research examined the differences in knowledge management strategies by organizational factors in colleges of education. Academic departments in colleges of education were selected from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. Data were collected through a web-based internet survey. Descriptive statistics, t tests, and analysis of variance based on indices and scales for the perceptions of the performance and the importance of knowledge management strategies were examined for differences by organizational factors. This study strengthens the idea that knowledge management can play a key role in managing academic departments in higher education institutions. The findings suggest that knowledge management as a strategy for organizational change relies on: (a) strong leadership with the understanding about the value of knowledge and internal human resources, (b) an organizational culture that facilitates collaboration and learning, (c) technological infrastructure that supports research, teaching and service activities, and (d) a systematic evaluation mechanism that proves the investment to be worth it. Implications for practice and future research were drawn.